Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The forgotten Singapura (Simhapura) in Vietnam: Trà Kiệu

Being a native of the prominent Singapura (Singapore, from Sanskrit सिंहपुर, siṃha (सिंह) meaning "lion", pura (पुर) meaning "city") , I was surprised to learn only recently that there was yet another, earlier and much more obscure, Simhapura (also from Sanskrit, meaning "lion city") in Southeast Asia.

I dare say not one in a million in Singapore knows about this.

Simhapura was, from the 4th to the 8th century, the capitol of Champa, an Indianized kingdom that at its peak, from the later 7th to the 10th century, controlled what is now southern and central Vietnam, and was known to the Chinese at various times as 占婆国, 林邑, 环王国, 占城. (Wikipedia, Lonely Planet).

Simhapura is now Trà Kiệu, a village (in Duy Xuyên, Quảng Nam Province, Vietnam) through which I passed recently.

The ramparts of Simhapura in Trà Kiệu (source)


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